Today was a special day – the day I return to my hometown and my college alma mater, the Univesity of Wisconsin at Whitewater. The first presentation to over 800 incoming students included some special guests: my sister, her son, her daughter, my 2 oldest sons, my wife, my Dad, my brother-in-law, and Beth (our internet guru here at The Date Safe Project). With people you know and care about, you always get a little extra energy before speaking. Plus, you are speaking to the school that means so much to you. The woman introducing me was Marilyn Kile, the head of our Peer Education Team back when I was in school. She is a wonderful person and a dynamic professional.
Both audiences today were full of spunk. At one point, guys jumped up and high-fived each other over a concept we were teaching. Afterward, they had an organization fair at the fieldhouse. The campus gives us a table at the fair each year to meet and talk with the students. My sister, Cheri, who is a survivor of sexual assault (and is one of the contributing authors to Voices of Courage) was able to attend this year. Watching students go up to Cheri and tell her how honored they are to meet her is inspiring for me, especially when some of those students are survivors themselves.
The day ended with 11 of us going to dinner and simply enjoying the time together!! After I had been in 10 cities in the past 8 days, a dinner with family and friends was truly appreciated.